Peach Blooms Painted with Blood

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Ancient Chinese classic poems are exquisite works of art. As far as 2,000 years ago, Chinese poets composed the beautiful work Book of Poetry and Elegies of the South, Later, they created more splendid Tang poetry and Song lyrics. Such classic works as Thus Spoke the Master and Laws: Divine and Human were extremely significant in building and shaping the culture of the Chinese nation. These works are both a cultural bond linking the thoughts and affections of Chinese people and an important bridge for Chinese culture and the world. Mr. Xu Yuanchong has been engaged in translation for 70 years. In December 2010, he won the Lifetime Achievement Award in Translation conferred by the Translators Association of China (TAC). He is honored as the only expert who translates Chinese poems into both English and French. After his excellent interpretation, many Chinese classic poems have been further refined into perfect English and French rhymes. This collection of Classical Chinese Poetry and Prose gathers his most representative English translations. It includes the classic works Thus Spoke the Master, Laws: Divine and Human and dramas such as Romance of the Western Bower, Dream in Peony Pavilion, Love in Long-life Hall and Peach Blossom Painted with Blood. The largest part of the collection includes the translation of selected poems from different dynasties. The selection includes various types of poems, lyrics and Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasty songs. The selected works start from the pre-Qin era to the Qing Dynasty, covering almost the entire history of classic poems in China. Reading these works is like tasting "living water from the source" of Chinese culture. We hope this collection will help English readers "know, love and appreciate" Chinese classic poems, share the intelligence of Confucius and Lao Tzu, share the gracefulness of Tang Dynasty poems, Song lyrics and classic operas and songs and promote exchanges between Eastern and Western culture. This book is one of the 14 books of Classical Chinese Poetry and Prose, a translation of Confucian classics Thus Spoke the Master.
Table of Contents
目 录

Beauty and Duty
Scene 1 Visit to a Beauty
第一出 访翠
Scene 2 Wedding Night
第二出 眠香
Scene 3 Dowry Rejected
第三出 却奁
Word and Sword
Scene 1 The Army
第一出 抚兵
Scene 2 The Message
第二出 修札
Scene 3 The Camp Gate
第三出 投辕
Crime and Succession
Scene 1 Parting
第一出 辞院
Scene 2 The Emperor’s Death
第二出 哭主
Scene 3 Succession to the Throne
第三出 阻奸
Persecution on Persecution
Scene 1 Refusa
第一出 拒媒
Scene 2 Fragrant in Her Bower
第二出 守楼
Scene 3 The Fan
第三出 寄扇
Songs and Tears
Scene 1 The Banquet
第一出 骂筵
Scene 2 Selection of Songstresses
第二出 选优
Scene 3 Lee’s Bower Revisited
第三出 题画
Scene 4 Epilogue
第四出 余韵 
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Sample pages of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood (ISBN:9787508540283) Sample pages of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood (ISBN:9787508540283) Sample pages of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood (ISBN:9787508540283) Sample pages of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood (ISBN:9787508540283) Sample pages of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood (ISBN:9787508540283) Sample pages of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood (ISBN:9787508540283)


Scene 3 The Camp Gate
(Enter two soldiers.)
First Soldier (Singing):
Killing the foe, we take the things they leave;
We occupy their houses but none grieve.
Officers eat from the stores a great deal;
Soldiers have from dawn till dusk their meal.
Second Soldier: Now we do not sing like that.
First Soldier: How do you sing now?
Second Soldier (Singing):
We can take nothing the foe leave;
People’s empty houses make us grieve.
Officers eat nothing from the store;
Soldiers can have their meals no more.
First Soldier: If what you sing is true, we poor soldiers would die of hunger.
Second Soldier: That is almost true.
First Soldier: Last time when we shouted for food supply, our general promised to station us around the food stores in the vicinity of the Southern Capital. But now days have passed without further information. Could our general have changed his mind?
Second Soldier: If he changes his mind, we may raise another tumult.
First Soldier: Do not talk about tumult. We had better go to the camp gate for the daily manoeuvre. Do not forget the punishment for violation of martial law is more terrible than hunger or even death. (Exeunt.)
(Enter Liu Jingting with his baggage on the back.)
第三出 投 辕[1]
(净、副净扮二卒上)(净)杀贼拾贼囊,救民占民房,当官领官仓,一兵吃三粮。(副净)如今不是这样唱了。(净)你唱来!(副净)贼凶少弃囊,民逃剩空房,官穷不开仓,千兵无一粮。(净)这等说,我们这穷兵当真要饿死了。(副净)也差不多哩。(净)前日鼓噪之时,元帅着忙,许俺们就粮南京,这几日不见动静,想又变卦了。(副净)他变了卦,俺们依旧鼓噪,有何难哉。(净)闲话少说,且到辕门点卯,再作商量。正是 “不怕饿杀,谁肯犯法”。(俱下)


There are four important Chinese dramatic works written in rhyme from the 13th to the 19th century, namely, Romance of Western Bower, Dream in Peony Pavilion, Love in Long-life Hall, and Peach Blooms Painted with Blood. All these four works tell us love stories which reflect the times from Tang to Qing dynasties. Love in Long-life Hall is said to reflect the strife between love and power, Romance of Western Bower between love and honor, Dream in Peony Pavilion shows that love can revive the dead, and Peach Blooms Painted with Blood that political power can separate living lovers.
The hero of Peach Blooms Painted with Blood is Master Hou, patriotic intellectual of Ming Dynasty, and the heroine is Fragrant Lee, one of the eight famed songstresses in Jinling. They fell in love at first sight and he presented her a fan as token of love, on which he wrote the following poem:
The beauty of the Southern land
Holds you not in sleeves but in hand.
You follow her as summer fan
Brings her fragrant breeze when you can.
They were soon married. The last Ming emperor died as a result of the troubles within and without, a new emperor succeeded to the throne. As Hou did not support the new ruler, he was put in prison and Lee was forced to remarry another lord. She would prefer death to remarriage, so she dashed her head against the ground and her blood stained the fan, on which a peachblossom was painted, and that is why the fan was called peachblossom fan. 

Peach Blooms Painted with Blood